KUALA LUMPUR, June 11 — Two DAP lawmakers today demanded to know why Putrajaya has yet to release a report on possible procedural violations by officials in the Flight MH370 crisis, although 100 days have lapsed since the aircraft’s disappearance.
Bukit Mertajam MP Steven Sim Chee Keong said it was “obvious” that there had been a clear breach of standard operating procedures in the country’s handling of the tragedy, which has continued to beleaguer the world over.
“Until today, almost reaching 100 days, there has been no postmortem report on the standard operating procedure (SOP) which apparently failed to trigger the proper emergency responses when the plane has gone missing.
“We do not need to wait for the black box to start investigating because it is obvious that there was poor response from the ground even after several red alerts showed the lack of SOP or the failure by certain parties to follow SOP,” the federal lawmaker told a press conference at the Parliament lobby here.
The opposition had previously claimed of obvious discrepancies in the way the government had responded in the early hours of the Boeing 777’s sudden disappearance on March 8.
Pakatan Rakyat (PR) leaders like Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim have repeatedly singled out the military’s failure to react to radar detection of an unidentified aircraft flying over Malaysian airspace, which later was found to be Flight MH370.
Sim also noted that when the plane disappeared from commercial radar just one hour after it left the Kuala Lumpur International Airport, there was a delay in response by Malaysian officials.
Setampin DAP lawmaker Julian Kok Ping said that the government is using “national security” as an excuse to conceal its weaknesses.
“Steven Sim’s question on the issue for this Parliamentary session has been rejected under the pretext of it being a ‘secret’,” he told the same press conference.
In the March sitting, Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia had omitted Sim’s query from the Order Paper on grounds that the question was meant to support a conjecture.
Sim had asked the Ministry of Defence to state which of its base had detected MH370 and which company had supplied the radar. He also asked what the follow-up action was on the military’s failure to respond.
The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 went missing in the early hours of March 8 during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, carrying 239 people on board.
MAS and Putrajaya have been severely criticised for the way it dealt with the crisis with family members of those on board the plane accusing the Najib administration of a cover-up.
The ongoing search for flight MH370 is considered the longest and most expensive in the world’s aviation history, with the Reuters news agency estimating costs to have hit RM141 million for the first month alone.
The Boeing 777 jet, which was carrying 239 people on board, disappeared on March 8 after the plane veered from its Beijing-bound flight path and flew in the opposite direction towards the southern Indian Ocean.